2015 isn’t over yet, load shedding will be over – Power Minister
Following concerns that the Ministry of Power may not meet its end-of-year deadline to solve the power crisis, the sector Minister, Kwabena Donkor, has urged Ghanaians to be patient as 2015 isn’t over yet.
With the resignation of the Transport Minister, Dzifa Attivor on Wednesday as a result of the bus branding scandal, attention has turned to the Power Minister who announced that he would resign if the power crisis persisted after 2015 when he was appointed by President Mahama with only six days until the end of the year.
Dr. Kwabena Donkor appeared before the Government Assurances Committee in Parliament. earlier on Wednesday to assure Ghanaians that his Ministry was working towards meeting the deadline.
However, the power minister admitted that a number of things could cause complications which could force an extension of the date for about a couple of weeks.
“In terms of all mechanical things, you will plan, put in place measure to ensure delivery. But normally in project management, you will have some allowance to make room for slippage and add or take away two weeks. Technically by the end of the year, load shedding should be over but the caveat is that barring any unforseen circumstances. For example the FPSO Nkrumah, which supplies gas to the Atuabo Gas processing plant, should it trip, it would mean that we would lose about 630 megawatts of power in the Aboadze corridor. It has had a number of trips in the last six months.
Dr. Donkor added that these factors, should they occur, would quickly be resolved and any complications would not be long lasting to the supply of power. “The good thing is whenever that happens, it’s never taken up to a week to bring it back to production. if it slips then we have a challenge. If anything untoward happens to the Southern Asogli plant and a few unplanned maintenance stoppages have happened that will also take about a week to repair. Barring any of those, we are on track.”
“I said I would solve load shedding not dumsor”
The Minister sought to set the record straight after comments he recently made to clarify his promise to end the country’s power crisis.
He attempted clarify his promise when answering questions posed to him by pressure group Occupy Ghana, stating that it was to end the load shedding programme and not power outages entirely.
Ghanaians who were skeptical of Dr. Donkor’s promise were up in arms following his comments.
According to them, the Minister is only making excuses to absolve himself of any blame and get out of resigning should the power crisis not end entirely at the end of the year, a claim Dr. Donkor dismissed on Wednesday.
“I have been at pains at very places to make a critical distinction that the new lexicon, dumsor does not reflect. Load shedding arises out of generation deficit. In ordinary language we would say power rationing, because we don’t have enough. That is what I promised on the floor of the House to work towards its cessation,” Dr. Donkor said.